Nickerson State Park, Brewster

4.6
#1 of 10 in Nature in Cape Cod
Nickerson State Park is a state-owned, public recreation area of more than located on Cape Cod in Brewster, Massachusetts. The state park's sandy soil and scrub pines surround many kettle ponds which are dependent on groundwater and precipitation. The largest of these are Cliff Pond (the largest at across), Flax Pond, Little Cliff Pond, and Higgins Pond. Ruth Pond, Keeler's Pond, Eel Pond and Triangle Pond provide additional water habitats.HistoryThe land comprising the state park was once part of the estate of Samuel Mayo Nickerson (1830-1914), an area native and Chicago liquor distiller who made a fortune as one of the founding officers of the First National Bank of Chicago. In 1890, Nickerson built Fieldstone Hall on land overlooking Cape Cod Bay, a mile west of the present-day park, to be the home of his son Roland C. Nickerson, Roland's wife Addie, and their three children, Roland Jr., Samuel, and Helen. Fieldstone Hall was lost to fire in 1906, and a larger mansion was built on the same site. That building subsequently became a seminary and is now a major feature of the upscale resort known as Ocean Edge.Shortly after Fieldstone Hall burned down, Roland Nickerson died at age 51, his death at the time being ascribed to his heartache at the loss of his home and personal possessions. His son, Roland Jr., a naval lieutenant, died in the 1918 influenza epidemic. In 1934, Addie Nickerson donated that portion of the estate on the south side of Route 6a for use as a "state forest park." It became the Commonwealth's first state park and was named in honor of her late husband and late son.
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Nickerson State Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
244 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • We only spent a few hours here, but it was obvious from the # of campers that it was a popular place. Accessible right from the bike trail, which we loved. A little bit of hilly climbing while you bik...  more »
  • We rode our mountain bikes here on the cape cod rail trail in search of some single track. The paved trails through the park are beautiful and very little traffic. They pass around many ponds and thic...  more »
  • Stopped for a break while on the Cape Cod Bike Trail...nice places to sit and clean bathroom facilities available... great biking trail!  more »
Google
  • I've grown up camping here almost every year with my family and friends. Great facilities, great secluded camping spots, great price. And I LOVE the ponds. I could play/swim in them for hours.
  • Spent a weekend here camping. Not too busy and campsite was clean and the staff was nice. I really enjoyed kayaking on the lake, was very tranquil!
  • A nice way to get away from the bustle. The Cape Cod rail trail clips through a corner of the park. There's a variety of camp sites available and a bunch of easy trails around a series of ponds. It's easy to forget these other options on the cape, aside from the beaches.
  • A state park, we had to pay to park. Beautiful winding roads, lots of biking and hiking trails. We got lost, just driving, it took a while to find our way out of the park. Lots of campsites.
  • This is my favorite place to go camping on the Cape. Big sites with space between them so you really feel like you have some room to unfurl with your friends and family. Fire pits allow for campfire cooking and the camp store sells firewood. The best part are the ponds and beaches though. Higgins and Little Cliff are my personal favorites although this can change is water levels rise from flooding or there is abundant algae growth. If you snorkel, there are fish, turtles and frogs or tadpoles to see depending on the time of year you visit.
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